Ad Expenditure: US$12.76bn 2014 GroupM Forecast This Year Next Year July 2014

Canada's Top Advertising Agencies

There is no accepted ranking of Canada's top advertising agencies by billings. The closest is a ranking by the number of creative awards collected during the course of the year, compiled by local trade magazine Strategy:

Strategy Magazine's "Most Creative Agencies" in Canada 2013

DDB Leo Burnett Lg2 BBDO John St Grey
DDB Canada Leo Burnett Canada Lg2 BBDO Canada John St Grey Canada
The local arm of DDB, formerly Palmer Jarvis DDB, has offices in Toronto, Vancouver, Edmonton and Montreal. The latter is a partnership with independent BleuBlancRouge. Widely recognised as one of the country's top agencies, DDB was named Strategy's Agency of the Year six times between 2000 and 2010. 

The Toronto outpost of Leo Burnett is one of Canada's leading creative agencies, and has enjoyed a run of success in the past couple of years. It was the network's own Agency of the Year for 2011 in its annual inhouse awards, as well as Top Agency in local trade magazine Strategy's creative report card. 

Lg2 is an independent advertising and design agency specialising in Francophone marketing for the Quebec region. Though small, Lg2 punches above its weight creatively, featuring regularly among Canadian national awards rankings. It was founded in 1992, and is still run by, Sylvain Labarre and Paul Gauthier.  Headquartered in Toronto, BBDO also has offices in Calgary and Montreal (as Nolin BBDO). It was formed from a series of acquisitions, including Baker Lovick and Canada's oldest ad agency McKim, founded in 1899. It is partnered by separately branded creative boutique Juniper Park. BBDO Canada was Strategy magazine's Agency of the Year for 2011. 

John St is a highly regarded creative agency in Toronto offering a range of services including design through part-owned Amoeba Corp. It was launched in late 2001 by a group of executives who had jumped ship from the old Ammirati Puris Lintas agency in Canada.

The local outpost of Grey Advertising has offices in Toronto and Vancouver. Once one of the country's top agencies, performance faltered towards the end of the 2000s. Stephanie Nerlich was hired from Lowe Roche to become president & CEO in 2011, and has overseen a steady revival of the business. 
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Taxi Rethink Zulu Alpha Kilo Dare Grip Cossette
Taxi Rethink Zulu Alpha Kilo Proximity Canada Grip Cossette
Taxi is a highly regarded creative agency with several offices in Canada, as well as one in the US and a growing presence in Europe. Founded in 1992, Taxi established itself as one of Canada's most admired agencies in the 2000s, Agency of the Year no less than five times. It was acquired by WPP in 2010 and is now aligned with Y&R. Rethink is an independent advertising and design agency with offices in Vancouver and Toronto. It was launched in 1999 in Vancouver by three senior staffers from the Palmer Jarvis agency, who jumped ship to launch their own business shortly after their employer was acquired by DDB.  Zulu Alpha Kilo is a highly regarded creative agency owned and run by creative director Zak Mroueh. He launched the agency in 2008 after a nine year stint as the top creative at Taxi. Intended at first to be little more than a boutique agency, it has expanded rapidly since then as a result of major accounts including Bell, Coke and Audi. The Canadian office of Dare - best-known for its UK outpost - was formed from the relaunch of Cossette West and Fjord Interactive in 2010, and subsequent bolt-on of social media shop RocketXL. It remains a part of Cossette's parent company Vision7. Its campaign for BC Children's Hospital won many awards in 2013 Grip is a highly regarded creative-led agency in Canada, offering a range of services from traditional advertising to digital marketing. It is still independent, owned and run by its founding partners. The business was launched in 2001 at the instigation of local brewer Labatt. Cossette is Canada's leading Francophone agency, and the core business within what is now marketing group Vision7 (which also owns Dare). Cossette has dominated Quebec's ad market for more than 30 years, and the group also has subsidiaries in English-speaking Canada.
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Other key agencies include

Union Juniper Park Publicis Canada
Dentsu Canada JWT Canada Saatchi & Saatchi Canada
FCB Canada Lowe Roche Canada TBWA\Canada
Havas Worldwide MacLaren McCann Y&R Canada
Sid Lee Ogilvy Canada Red Urban

Colour Codes:  Adbrands Profile  Adbrands Snapshot  Adbrands Capsule  Adbrands Assignments

See also

MDC Partners Aimia

Top Media Agencies in Canada

Recma Top 5 2013 Other Leading Agencies
OMD M2 Universal Media Experts
ZenithOptimedia Cossette / Jungle Media Carat
MediaCom Starcom MediaVest Havas Media
Mindshare Genesis Vizeum Initiative

Marketing magazine Strategy

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